Ok, you might think right now “Oh no, another article about Inbound Marketing and Conversions”. …and you are somehow right, but Inbound Marketing is nowadays just to important not to write about it. This article is a little bit different, it is just stating that you have to attract your customers and to convert your traffic into leads. Is this too simple? Too basic? So where is your problem?
In marketing and Sales we are always challenging with one question“how to generate more leads for the business?”. Demand generation is quite often on the top of the list of the biggest challenges of marketing managers.
The most difficult thing about B2B business today is that customers don’t need you the way they used to. In recent times sales representatives have become aware of customers’ needs and they are selling them “solutions”—generally, complex combinations of products and services. Now, owing to increasingly sophisticated procurement teams and purchasing consultants armed with troves of data, companies can readily define solutions for themselves. Do you know that more than 60% of the decision making process is complete before costomers reach out a vendor website? And furthermore, did you know that 90% of c-level decision makers are not answering cold emails and phone calls? This information were confirmed by the Corporate Executive Board study of more than 1,400 B2B customers
So how to generate leads with content marketing? Start helping, stop selling.
The answer is simple but difficult: You have to stop to sell and start to help. This is a basic human instinct. We want people to like us so we start to tell them about us, we want to have more customers so we start to tell every lead about our company and about our product. Maybe this was working some years ago, but now customers are tuning out the self-promotion and taking control of their information gathering. They can search by themselves for different products and make their own decision. They know that you will always praise your product and underestimated the one of your competitors. And they know that they can experience everything firsthand. Your customers are doing their research and they want to receive from you an offer and a good prize.
The only answer to this problem is to start helping our customers when they are in the early stages of a buying process or even before. So there are two good things to get leads with content marketing:
- Create helpful content that attracts your audience<
- Make your audience connected with you (e-mail newsletters, social media profiles, create groups or forums)
- Convert traffic into leads and prospects
First, you have be sure that your content is actually helpful and answers all the customer questions. It’s too easy to publish content that attempts to back-door customers into buying from you. You can call this “insidious attempts at self-promotion.”
The next thing is that you have to convert that traffic with “real” conversion opportunities. You cannot expect your customers to take the leap from the early-stages of the buying process to the later stages. So provide deep, registration-worthy offers as the potential next step. Offers such as white papers, webinars, and ebooks that can help your still potential customer to become your major customer.
Is this too simple? Too basic? Maybe it is, and maybe you have already read something “more complicated” But what I want to ask you is: Why is it so hard? I’m sure that you are facing sometimes the problem to gain more traffic and to convert this traffic, so I will repeat it once again, the clue is to attract your audience and to convert them into your leads. It’s the customers who now do the marketing for us. I would like to remind you of the concept that “customer service is the new marketing” because these customers are taking control of the sales process. And these customers are the one who will buy either your product or the one from your competitor.